I've spent the last two years working at a small prop trading firm, using the firms own trading strategies. The trading taught to me is primarily a combo of program trading along w/ short term momentum scalps and reading/interpreting the L2 box. After two years, I've had a good measure of success, though the less volatile months can leave me a little lean come the end of the month (payday). Months can vary greatly, and though the firm I've been employed by has been making money consistently for years using these strategies, we're all a rule change or two away from being the guy making your fries at McFastFood. Furthermore, there is a limit to how much can be made utilizing these strategies; meaning, you can't just up the tier size and expect to make money b/c many times, there is nobody to get out to. I've been discussing w/ friends in the business my options and opportunities. I live in the NYC area, graduated w/ my undergrad from a good school w/ a high GPA, and have all my licenses. I know I could get a job at any of the big firms as a broker, or "financial planner"..but I want to stay where the money and excitement is....Trading. Recognizing that my earnings are limited w/ my current style, as is the training at my office if I want to try to expand, should I try to get a suit/tie job at one of the brokerage firms making $60-70K a year (+bonus) and try to work my way up to getting onto a trading desk. Another option is working as an energy trader for one of the local energy companies. I wouldn't want to do this forever, but it would expose me to new ways to position trade and see how big money is made. Along w/ experience, this could eventually help me land a position at one of better brokerage/trading firms or hedge funds. I also wouldn't mind escaping the feast or famine pay structure that i'm currently under. My question is: What is the best way to break into the more legit trading business and gain access to the best mentors, trading strategies, and training? as a side note, out of boredom, I'm taking L1 CFA exam in June....I figured it could help pad the resume and differentiate me from other possible applicants. Thanks!